Friday, January 05, 2007

Best Investment of 2006: Arugula

Of course I had to have a year-end post about food, given all my food knowledge and general love of food. Earlier in September of last year, the nation had a spinach scare due to some pesky e. Coli found in some bagged spinach (total aside: I can't look at bacteria the same way ever since watching Nick Park's bacteria on Creature Comforts). As a result, spinach was taken off the shelves in grocery stores and from restaurant menus across the nation and you could hardly find it anywhere. People shunned it while looking for another leafy green to satisfy their Popeye craving. Enter arugula. I've actually always been surprised how many people have never heard of arugula. I remember asking a friend of mine (who lives in New Jersey, so not exactly the boonies), if he liked arugula. He replied, "What's arugula?" Granted, this was the same person who asked me "Why don't you just say 'cornmeal'" when I was explaining to him what polenta is.

As a result of the spinach scare, our nation's green leaf gurus decided to introduce America to Arugula. So, like Deena from Dreamgirls, Arugula stole spinach's thunder and emerged as a star. As the scare continued, farmers couldn't grow enough arugula, and you began to see dishes like "Arugula Salad" and "Sauteed Arugula" at Fridays and Chili's, the surest sign that America was ready for this bitter green.

You might have thought that Youtube was last year's best investment, but I would have put my money on arugula.

P.S., I realize that I'm a little late with finishing my 2006 review, but I just have two more topics! Then I'll join the rest of the world in 2007.


tim said...

I love arugula. And quite frankly, I think it is best sauteed in butter. The salty, creamy, bitter tast is fabulous!!!! Yay for arugula.

teahouse said...

Hooray for arugula!!

I used to confuse it with rugelach..very different. But yummy as well.

kevin said...

I have never ever heard of Arugula?

What exactly is it. It looks like spinach leaves. Is it only grown in America?

Kev in NZ

:: jozjozjoz :: said...

I love argula!

TCho said...

Omg, Kevin, you don't know what arugula is?!?! ;-) It's a peppery green, and is technically an herb. Here's some more info: